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Home Brew Forums > Home Brewing Beer > Brew Science > A Brewing Water Chemistry Primer
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Old 01-21-2014, 07:16 PM   #841
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Originally Posted by ajdelange View Post
That depends on the grains and the alkalinity of the water but it is not an unreasonable number by any means. 88% lactic acid is 11.6 N which means that 2 mL yields 23.2 mEq. In a typical mash with 10 pounds of grain and 10 gal of water that might be expected to shift mash pH by about 0.06 pH or so.

Yes.
I noticed in my last batch (an American Amber and the first I've acutally tested) that mash pH was at 5.4 with only the natural acidifying action of the grist. However the sparge tested at about 6.2. I had made no adjustments to the water beforehand or during the process as I was just trying to get a handle on where things were without modification.

Granted, I was using test strips instead of a meter so my numbers aren't going to be as accurate as they probably should be.
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Old 01-21-2014, 08:02 PM   #842
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pH measurements with strips are pretty useless in brewing.

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Old 01-21-2014, 10:28 PM   #843
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Ad, first off a huge thanks, this has really helped! I have a question though, at what percentage of roasted malt would you skip the saurmalt?

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Old 01-21-2014, 11:54 PM   #844
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Every mash contains things that have proton deficits WRT to desired mash pH and things that have proton surfeits (negative proton deficits). In the first group are the brewing water (assuming it has finite alkalinity), base and other lightly colored malts, sodium bicarbonate and lime. In the latter are higher colored malts, sauermalz and acids. The idea is to have the total proton deficit to be equal to 0 at the desired mash pH (surfeits equal deficits). You can skip the sauermalz if the total surfeit from the dark malts is enough to make the sum of all the mash surfeits equal to the sum of the mash deficits at the desired pH.

That's probably confusing but I am trying to encourage people to think in these terms. Another way of putting it is that you can skip the sauermalz if the acidity of the dark malts is enough to reduce the pH of the base malts to the desired pH without the need for additional acid. This depends on
1)The amount of each malt you use
2)The distilled water mash pH of each of these malts
3)The buffering capacities (amount of acid required to bring about unit pH change) of each malt
4)The alkalinity of the brewing liquor and the water to grist ratio
5)The calcium and magnesium hardnesses of the liquor
6)Any additions of acids or bases to the mash/water

There are several available spreadsheets and calculators which attempt to make the necessary calculations for you but none are robust and even if they were they wouldn't have the malt data. They are, nonetheless, useful for rough calculations i.e. they will get you into the ball park in many cases.

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Old 01-24-2014, 07:45 PM   #845
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Hi,

I'm a bit confused about water requirements for an IPA, I found a reference for an IPA earlier in this thread:

From baseline:
Baseline: Add 1 tsp of calcium chloride dihydrate (what your LHBS sells) to each 5 gallons of water treated. Add 2% sauermalz to the grist.

IPA: For very minerally beers (Export, Burton ale): Double the calcium chloride and the gypsum.

so does this mean for an IPA it would be:

2tsp of Calcium Chloride and 1 tsp of gypsum (since theres no gypsum in the baseline?)

Thanks for the help!
Jon

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Old 01-24-2014, 08:13 PM   #846
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Yes, that would be confusing. The implication is that you double the baseline for British Beers since an IPA is a British beer but perhaps you are doing an American IPA. Thus the implied recommendation is 2 tsp each of CaCl2 and CaSO4. That just seems like too much to me from my current way of thinking. I'd be more comfortable with 1 tsp of each and then experiments with the finished beer and gypsum to see if more is warranted in future brews.

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Old 01-24-2014, 10:59 PM   #847
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.

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Old 01-25-2014, 12:45 AM   #848
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So my next recipe is going to be a Black IPA using .875 lbs of Carafa III which apparently can be pretty acidic. I will be using RO water, so my idea is to use (per 5 gallons of mash water)

1tsp of Gypsum, 1tsp of Calcium Chloride and 1tsp of Sodium Bircobanate (as I read that the Carafa III can be pretty acidic). Does that sound like a decent starting off game plan?

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Old 01-25-2014, 01:53 PM   #849
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This is the Primer thread where the object is a KISS approach to brewing so under the guidance of the Primer you would use the calcium chloride and gypsum and skip the sauermalz. In most cases with a dark beer you will be OK (if on the low end of desirable pH). I have never measured Carafa but deriving some data from Kai Troester's measurements it appears that 1 gram of sodium bicarbonate (1/5 tsp) will be enough to neutralize 7/8 lb of Carafa III to pH 5.5. A whole tsp. thus seems excessive. But I don't know anything about the rest of the grain bill. It may be that the proton deficits of the base malts are sufficient to offset the proton surfeit of the Carafa. It depends on the base malts' properties and how much of them are being used as well as whether any other colored malts are present. The Primer strives to ignore all this.

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Old 01-25-2014, 07:53 PM   #850
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Thanks adj! I have to admit its easy to go overboard on the reading of this topic! I appreciate the help

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